Ampersand Design Studio

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Category Archives: art + design

featured in Spaces Magazine 12.11.2013

We are BEYOND thrilled to see our Melamine Ampersand Pattern Platter show up in one of our absolute FAVORITE magazines!!! Spaces Kansas City always highlights the best of the best in Kansas City and beyond! The photography is beautiful, the writing is fascinating, the trend predictions are right on target and we always get to learn more about the interesting people that make up our fine little city! Thank you so much for including us in your “Seeing Things in Black & White” round-up! We LOVE it all!

(Grab a platter for yourself here)

Find us at Utilitarian Workshop 11.30.2013

In honor of small business Saturday, we want to share some exciting news about our latest partnership right here in Kansas City! (You may recall our post about their kickstarter campaign back in December of 2012). Utilitarian Workshop is an innovative group that designs heirloom furniture and spaces (yeah, they do it all). Stemming from their line of furniture grew a one of a kind, brick & mortar shop that sells uniquely hand-crafted goods for the modern environment. Needless to say, we couldn’t be more thrilled to have our limited edition screen prints included in their collection. A variety of our gold and black posters are now for sale at UW! Support small business Saturday and stop by to see them and pick up a print!

They are located at 1659 Summit in Kansas City, Missouri, right next door to Westside Local.

 

a fashion-loving graphic designer’s dream 08.12.2013

For two graphic designers (who met in Typography class), that happen to love fashion as well, this little team-up couldn’t be any more exciting for us. UNIQLO and House Industries have partnered together to make some pretty eye-catching, typographic fashion statements! Check it out here!

Branding for Bloggers 08.07.2013

Last Friday we had the pleasure of speaking about Branding for Bloggers at the very first Go Blog Social Conference in Kansas City!! It was a great turnout and we were so thrilled to get to meet some new blogger-friends, and of course catch up with some KC blogger besties!

Just in case you wanted to attend and didn’t get the chance, we wanted to share a few thoughts from our presentation. Clearly we won’t type out an hour long talk for you on this post, but here are a few highlights for those of you interested in branding your blog or taking it to a new level.

What is a Brand?

A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another. —Seth Godin

Why do you need a Brand?

Your blog branding is another way to describe the whole experience for someone coming to your site, not just your blog’s content. And whether your blog is a part of a business or not, you’re still trying to win the interest of readers (even if your mom is your only reader). This includes a logo, colors, typefaces, and content in each post.

Brand YOU

The idea of branding your blog can seem a little overwhelming until you realize that YOU are your brand. And you KNOW you. The key is to be true to yourself. No one else can tell your unique story and that alone sets your blog apart from any other. Figure out what makes you different, be authentic, and then work it to connect with people on a deeper level. Create original content and readers will keep returning.

 

Brand Statement

This is a phrase that’s quick and memorable. You can refer back to this to make sure you are staying true to your vision. When we get hired to design visual identities for other companies, this is the first step we take with them to help define what their brand is all about in order to create the perfect logo, business cards and other collateral that will accurately portray what they do. Once you’ve distilled things down to this statement, it is much easier to keep things consistent which really is the key to creating a strong bran.

Make it Pretty

Once you’ve thought about what makes you unique and what your slant will be, it’s time to think about how you will translate that voice to the visual part of your blog. The layout and look of your blog is as important as your content (in our opinion). Create a blog that’s well-designed and people will be much more inclined to read it.

You have to Start Somewhere

There are lots of resources out there whether it’s hiring a full service web designer to online tutorials. Start taking steps towards refining your blog brand. If you don’t look back at where you started and feel a little embarrassed, then you haven’t grown!

A quick pause to give a little shout out to these two ladies! Our biggest thanks to Sarah & Kat, the founders of Go Blog Social, for putting together such a great conference! It was great to meet you both, and we’re thankful you asked us to be a part of GBS2013! We can’t wait to see what you do next! (PS – how cute is Carrie’s baby belly?!!)

Lastly, we shared one of our favorite quotes with the attendees and we want to share it with all of you! This quote by Ira Glass is something that has inspired us over and over again and we hope it does the same for you!

 

  1. Getting Inspired | City In A Jar

    [...] an “oh. yes. i should remember that.” moment and came when Carrie and Morgan shared an Ira Glass quote I’d read [...]

    August 8, 2013 11:53 am
  2. The Wonderful Web | Lovely in the Everyday

    [...] -branding is kind of a foreign thing to me [...]

    August 11, 2013 5:08 pm
  3. Kaitlin

    Thanks for the advice! I launched my blog earlier this month and it is very important to remember the importance of good branding!

    August 21, 2013 7:14 pm
    • ampersand

      You are so welcome, Kaitlin! Congrats on the launch of your blog! Cheers!

      August 21, 2013 8:13 pm

Trig 07.26.2013

Isn’t this just pure fun to look at? As trained graphic designers and current pattern designers and forever color-lovers…..ahh, this is just overload of fun!! It’s a project by Olivia King,a designer and illustrator based in Sydney, Australia. This project is called Trig and here’s a little description straight from the mind of the designer:  “I recently started working on a project that’s a been a combination of two of my great loves – geometric patterns and accessory design. I was always pretty terrible at maths in school, but the name Trigonometry seemed ironically appropriate in light of my passion for triangles. Using a selection of native Australian materials, and hand painted wood, the first prototype designs were endless and I quickly realised the potential for project where the designs weren’t mine, but those of the customers themselves. Using the Trig app, each piece is unique the tastes and style of those making them, with colour, shape and material options available in multiple variations. The final products are finished with natural oils and packaged in bright boxes with personalised thank you cards, ready for wear within days of their creation.”

Check our Olivia King’s portfolio here

  1. Jen Ramos

    So cool!! Love all these shapes and colors– definitely eye catching.

    >>>> Madebygirl.blogspot.com
    >>>> MadeByGirl.com

    August 1, 2013 8:21 pm